Updated: Apr 2
We celebrate World Sleep Day on Friday, 19 March 2021. We invite you to reflect on your sleep quality and pay more attention to sleep hygiene in order to nourish your physical and mental health.
19 March 2021
According to World Sleep Society, studies have demonstrated that stable bedtimes and rise times are associated with better sleep quality in young, middle – aged adults, and seniors. Studies also show that regular sleepers have better mood, better psychomotor performance and better academic achievement.
The Sleep Foundation states that paying attention to sleep hygiene is one of the most straightforward ways that can set yourself up for better sleep. Strong sleep hygiene means having both a bedroom environment and daily routines that promote consistent, uninterrupted sleep.
According to the Sleep Foundation these are signs of poor sleep hygiene:
Having hard time falling asleep;
Experiencing frequent sleep disturbances;
Suffering daytime sleepiness;
Overall lack of consistency in sleep quantity or quality.
The Sleep Foundation recommends taking the following steps for practicing good sleep hygiene:
1. Set your sleep schedule
Have a fixed wake – up time;
Make gradual adjustments;
Don’t overdo it with naps;
2. Follow a nightly routine
Keep your routine consistent;
Budget 30 minutes for winding down;
Dim your lights;
Unplug from electronics;
Test methods of relaxation;
Don’t toss and turn;
3. Cultivate healthy daily habits
Get daylight exposure;
Be physically active;
Reduce alcohol consumption;
Cut down on caffeine in the afternoon and evening;
Don’t dine late;
Restrict in-bed activity.
4. Optimise your bedroom
Have a comfortable mattress and pillow;
Use excellent bedding;
Set a cool yet comfortable temperature;
Block out light;
Drown out noise;
Try calming scents.
It is important to note, that the environment and habits can be adapted and optimised for better sleep quality. However, there are no universal rules that could be applied to everyone. Each person should find out what an ideal sleep hygiene looks like for him or her personally.
Therefore, it is worth testing out different adjustments and see what helps you to sleep better and to create your personal bedtime routines.
Source: Mayo Clinic
Sleep Foundation. 14 August 2020
World Sleep Society.